Knowing how to style your wig properly can make it look more natural and flattering for your face shape. But beware—not all wigs are styled the same.
Synthetic wigs should be styled differently from human hair wigs, as improper styling can lead to permanent wig damage. Human hair wigs are a bit harder to damage when curling or brushing, but there are precautions to keep in mind to retain the natural look and feel.
Still, don’t be discouraged—creating flattering styles for both types is incredibly easy! Check out these styling tips for synthetic and human hair wigs to ensure your wig looks excellent every day.
Synthetic Hair Benefits
In some ways, synthetic hair is easier to maintain than human hair. While you don't have to worry about the strands drying out or the color fading, you must be careful about tangling or damaging the strands.
Also, synthetic wigs don’t last as long as human hair wigs, but they are typically more cost-effective. Usually, synthetic hair wigs last anywhere from three to six months; but depending on how you care for your wig, it is possible to make it last longer.
Synthetic Styling Tips
If you have a synthetic wig, there are some styling tips to keep in mind to avoid damaging the strands. With these tips, you'll learn not only what to do but also what not to do to ensure your wig lasts as long as intended—and hopefully, even longer.
The number one rule with synthetic wigs is not to use heat unless the wig is labeled explicitly as heat-resistant or heat-friendly. Using hot styling tools like flat irons or hair dryers will melt or burn the strands and destroy the wig.
A spray bottle is a must-have when styling. Misting the wig and finger-combing the strands will help to give body back to the wig, remove static, and smooth frizz when you're between washings. Both short and long wigs can be finger-combed.
Here are some brushing techniques to keep in mind so you don't break hair strands:
- You can brush a synthetic wig, but never when it’s wet! If it is wet, use a wide-toothed comb, so the fibers don’t get damaged.
- Pick combs are perfect for ringlets and managing flyaways.
- When you do brush your wig, always use a wig brush. Brushes meant for human hair can snag or break synthetic strands.
- For waves or looser curls, brush with short strokes. Otherwise, you could remove the curl.
- If you want to achieve a smoother style, brush the wig with longer strokes but with light pressure.
You can use styling products in your synthetic wig, but they should be designed for wigs and not for human hair. Find styling products, including shampoo and conditioner created only for synthetic wigs. Using products meant for human hair can damage the strands and make them lose their shine.
Items like a wig spray and mousse are available to hold styles. When applying mousse, lightly brush for more gentle holds. And for curly hair, make sure to scrunch the product into the fibers carefully.
For the most part, synthetic wigs hold their style after washing, but they can begin to lose their shape after repeated wear and washings. Wash it in cool water using the appropriate shampoo and conditioner and allow it to air dry. Also, use a wig stand or even a spray bottle when drying and never fit it over a wig head. Doing so can ruin the fit on your cap.
To give the wig more volume, you can tease the underside of the layers while you smooth the strands back as you go, or for a smaller lift, use a comb to lift the roots away from the cap. Set the style with wig spray.
You can cut your wig to trim and shape it. Be sure to wear the wig while you’re getting a trim or haircut to make sure that it’s flattering on you.
When shaping your bangs, you’ll need to wear the wig and place it just beneath your natural hairline if you plan to wear bangs pushed off your face. For volume in bangs, brush them from the underside with an upward movement.
Human Hair Benefits
Unlike synthetic, human hair wigs are easier to style and don't require specific products (except for wig shampoo and conditioner). They offer an extremely natural look and feel. Even though they might be more expensive, human hair wigs last several years as opposed to the months of wear synthetic wigs provide.
Like natural hair, human hair wigs have a lot of versatility for styling, but they lose their style after washings. Nonetheless, they can offer a lot of room for experimentation. Did you ever want to be a redhead or see if cornrows would look great on you? Choosing cornrow braided lace wigs in any color can give you a look you've always to try without the commitment.
Human Hair Styling Tips
For the most part, styling your human hair wig is more manageable than synthetic wigs. You don't have to worry about burning or melting strands or ruining the shine with the wrong product. Here are the typical steps for creating any style you’d like.
Before washing or styling, brush the wig with a paddle brush or a wide-toothed comb to detangle the strands. Use a round brush while blow-drying.
You will need wig shampoo and conditioner to wash your wig. Keep these tips in mind when washing:
- Always use cool and never hot water.
- Clean the inside of the cap.
- When applying the conditioner, avoid the roots.
- Carefully blot dry with a towel.
- Have a monofilament wig? Part the hair with a comb.
- Apply styling or protective products before air drying (again, never on a wig head).
- Wash at least once a week.
Human hair wigs can withstand the heat from styling tools like a flat iron. For the best results, pin it to a blockhead to keep it secure.
Blow the wig until it is half dried and then continue to blow-dry with a round brush. Using a round brush will help to smooth the hair.
Use a flat iron to straighten your wig, and be sure to start an inch from the roots. Separate the hair into layers with clips. Finish the look with hairspray.
Again, separate the wig strands into sections. Wrap one around the wand and hold for up to ten seconds. Release the curl and allow it to cool, so the curls hold. After you've curled all the sections of hair, finish with hairspray.
With these styling tips for synthetic and human hair wigs, you’ll be able to care for your wig the proper way. Just remember that they have their differences. If you’re a synthetic wig wearer, consider switching to a human hair wig for the ease of styling it offers. Check out our wide selection of wigs at Instant Arẹ̀wà Hair. And if you have more questions, visit our FAQ page or contact us.